| Africatime
Sunday 30 April 2017
(APA 03/31/17)
The 2017 2.26 trillion shillings budget tabled by National Treasury Cabinet Secretary (CS) Henry Rotich on Thursday, grabbed the attention of major Kenyan dailies on Friday. “Poor families win big in Budget,” reported the Daily Nation which pointed out that Thursday’s Budget tabled in Parliament was “win-for-all” Budget which was designed to spur consumption, woo investors and promote local goods. “National Treasury Cabinet Secretary (CS) Henry Rotich struck a careful balance not to hurt the wider public and made proposals to boost consumption,” reported the daily. “To each a slice,” reported the Standard newspaper, which pointed out that senior citizens and low-income earners emerged the biggest winners in this year’s Budget unveiled by Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich on Thursday...
(Xinhuanet 03/31/17)
The Kenyan police said on Friday that they have arrested 12 key drug barons during a major security operation conducted in the coastal city of Mombasa. Head of Anti Narcotic Police Unit Hamis Massa said four foreigners were among those arrested and a haul of drugs was seized in joint raid by the detectives. The four suspects, including three Italians and a Mauritian are likely to deport from the country on Friday. Sample of heroin and cocaine nabbed during the operation were sent to the Government Chemist for further analysis. Massa said that the wanted drug baron identified as Stephen Bosire is among the eight Kenyans arrested in the operation. He allegedly supplies large amounts of narcotics from neighboring countries,...
(Bloomberg 03/30/17)
Kenyan Treasury Secretary Henry Rotich will seek to convince a skeptical market of the government’s plan to return to fiscal consolidation when he presents its budget on Thursday. After reaping the benefits of low international oil prices for the last three years, East Africa’s largest economy risks being weighed down by a drought and a law capping the interest commercial banks can charge to 4 percentage points above the central bank’s key rate. These three charts show the factors that may complicate the budget aimed at boosting the nation’s gross domestic product. The government intends to narrow its fiscal deficit to between 6 percent and 6.5 percent of gross domestic product in the fiscal year starting July from 9.6 percent...
(Xinhuanet 03/30/17)
Kenyan manufacturers vowed Wednesday to embrace energy-efficiency technologies in order to combat climate change. Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM) CEO Phyllis Wakiaga told an energy forum in Nairobi that the industrial sector, as a major consumer of energy in the country, can help Kenya reduce its carbon emissions. "Manufacturers will therefore prioritize use of energy efficient technologies by undertaking energy audits for their firms so as to help reduce their carbon footprints," Wakiaga said at the Kenya Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Exhibition and Conference 2017. The three-day event brought together stakeholders from the government, renewable energy developers, energy efficiency service providers, developing partners and financiers, with the aim of promoting renewable energy development, energy efficiency and resource efficiency in...
(Capitalfm Business 03/30/17)
The high cost of basic commodities and expansion of the tax bracket are among key areas Kenyans expect the 2017/18 budget due Thursday to address. Those who spoke to Capital FM News ahead of the reading of the budget Thursday afternoon by Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich said the government needs to address the cost of basic food items in order to improve the lot of many citizens. Some however said that the government needed to identify potential tax contributors and seal gaps that make tax evasion easier. A reduction in the cost of fuel also featured prominently among Kenyans interviewed by Capital FM News with most saying the high cost of fuel was what triggered high cost of essential...
(Reuters (Eng) 03/30/17)
Kenyan herdsmen burned down a luxury safari lodge owned by a white conservationist on Wednesday, a neighboring ranch owner said, the latest attack to take place in the drought-stricken Laikipia area. The attack on the Mukutan Retreat, where guests can pay more than $650 per night according to travel websites, followed a military operation to restore law and order in the area. Kenyan security officials and the lodge's owners were not immediately available for comment. Insecurity in Laikipia has spiked in recent months as armed cattle herders searching for scarce grazing drive tens of thousands of cattle onto private farms and ranches. A dozen people have been killed. Some lawmakers have said the violent land invasions were being stoked by...
(The Citizen 03/30/17)
The government will have a tough balancing act as it announces financing plans for the Sh2.6 trillion 2017/2018 budget. This as National Treasury plans to increase spending without necessarily introducing a raft of taxes that could further burden both companies and individuals. In the financing plan enumerated in the Budget Policy Statement, the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) will be out to collect Sh1.7 trillion, which is Sh400 billion more than what its expected to collect this financial year. Treasury mandarins are working with the assumption that projected economic growth will lead to increased revenue collection. KRA will also be required to expand the tax band and improve efficiency to get additional revenues. This leaves treasury with Sh900 billion hole in...
(The Citizen 03/30/17)
Police have impounded 41.9 kg of ivory pieces with a street value of about 2 million shillings at a home in Msambweni, Kwale County. Msambweni OCPD, Joseph Chebusit, says the elephant tusks were found in a woman’s house packaged in sacks after being cut into smaller pieces. Chebusit says police have counted 88 pieces of elephant tusks but are yet to establish the sources and destination of the captured ivory pieces and are searching for suspects behind the ivory smuggling. By Nicky Gitonga
(Xinhuanet 03/30/17)
The African Union (AU) is extremely appalled by the attacks against African students in Noida and other cities in India. The pan-African bloc has deplored the violence unleashed during the riot that started on Monday targeting Africans of various nationalities, particularly Nigerians, which resulted in loss of innocent lives and serious injuries, the AU said in a statement. The attacks have also resulted in the displacement of many Africans from their normal places of residence, thereby putting their lives in serious danger, it said. AU has expressed heartfelt condolence to the families of the deceased; and it wished speedy recovery to all those who have sustained injuries. AU has called on the Indian authorities to provide all necessary support to...
(AFP (eng) 03/29/17)
Kenya's High Court on Wednesday gave parliament 60 days to enact legislation that would make it obligatory to have more female lawmakers, or face dissolution. The 2010 constitution requires that no more than two thirds of lawmakers should be men, a principle hailed at the time as a big step towards equality. However the current male-dominated parliament has repeatedly rejected legislation to enforce this. Four rights groups had petitioned the courts to compel parliament to enact such a law before a general election on August 8, saying there was a risk of a constitutional crisis.
(Bloomberg 03/29/17)
Kenya’s government rejected opposition leader Raila Odinga’s allegations of corruption in the award of a management tender at the country’s main port. Odinga, a former prime minister, said on March 26 that DP World Ltd. won the contract even after 12 rival companies submitted better bids and following a $275 million concessionary loan from the United Arab Emirates. DP World, which is owned by the government of Dubai, declined to comment. “All due process was followed,” Eric Kiraithe, spokesman for Kenya’s government, said by phone.
(Daily Nation 03/29/17)
Kenya has received equipment worth Sh32 million which can detect chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear attack. The donation from the European Union (EU) will enhance the country’s capability to respond to incidents involving the threats. Health Principal Secretary Nicholas Muraguri on Tuesday received the equipment at Afya House from the EU delegation led by Mr Jean Pierre. Dr Muraguri said the donation is a demonstration of Kenya’s “good partnership with EU.” He said the equipment — which was enclosed in suitcase-like packaging — are part of other five major projects between the country and the regional body to ensure the country and the region can mitigate the risks of any biological or chemical threat. “Kenya hosts the Eastern and Central...
(Daily Nation 03/29/17)
Taxpayers have likely lost Sh40 billion in a project to build a new 450-kilometre fuel pipeline between Mombasa and Nairobi, the Nation can reveal. In contracting riddled with ruthless, old-school corruption, Kenya Pipeline Corporation (KPC), has embarked on a project which renders useless equipment, some of it new, on which the public has already spent hundreds of millions of shillings. They are throwing away perfectly good infrastructure and buying capacity the country has no use for because procurement offers an opportunity to eat, according to whistle blowers. It's all a matter of inches. Kenya planned to upgrade its pipeline to 16 inches which would give it -- and the region -- enough capacity for the foreseeable future. So between 2008...
(Xinhuanet 03/29/17)
Kenya's telecommunication companies have taken the fight for subscribers to the low-income segment of the market. The firms, Safaricom, Airtel and Orange Kenya have in the last one week come up with tariffs allowing subscribers to call, text and access internet at the lowest price. Safaricom, East African nation's leading telecom, last week introduced Flex, a service that offers customers a chance to determine how much money they will spend on calls, short messages and Internet bundles. One unit in the Flex plan is equivalent to 3 megabyte of data, 20 seconds voice call or three short messages across all networks. Subscribers can sign up for a daily bundle costing a dollar that offers 115 units, a 6 dollar weekly...
(Xinhuanet 03/29/17)
The Kenya Red Cross Society and the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) on Tuesday appealed for 25 million U.S. dollars to help 1 million Kenyans in need of food assistance. The IFRC warned that the number of people now in need of food assistance has reached 3 million -- well over double the number recorded in December 2016. Abbas Gullet, Secretary General of the Kenya Red Cross Society and Vice President of the IFRC said the drought situation is getting worse every day, warning that malnutrition rates among children are steadily climbing. "Children are getting sick, and livelihoods of families have been decimated following the loss of thousands of their livestock," Gullet said in a...
(Bloomberg 03/28/17)
Home Afrika Ltd., a Kenyan property developer, will return to debt markets to raise as much as 5 billion shillings ($48.6 million) and complete projects in the capital and on the East African nation’s coast. The company, based in Nairobi, has picked Genghis Capital Ltd. to offer between 2 billion and 5 billion shillings to international investors in the first phase of the funds drive that’s set to begin by April, Chief Executive Officer Dan Awendo said in a March 24 interview. Materials “should be ready by the end of March 2017 to allow us to launch our fundraising roadshows,” he said.
(The Star 03/28/17)
China has given Kenya a Sh2.25 million grant for food to mitigate the effects of drought. Treasury and the Chinese Embassy signed exchange of notes for humanitarian assistance in Nairobi on Monday. Under the deal, China will supply 21,000 metric tonnes of rice, a shipment expected to arrive in three weeks. Treasury CS Henry Rotich said the government has been taking short term measures to address the food crisis. This includes mobilising funds through expenditure reprioritisation to meet the cost of importing maize and other foodstuff and supplying water to the drier parts of the country. “However, the challenge is daunting and our budgetary resources are not adequate. This grant will therefore go a long way towards supplementing government efforts...
(AL Jazeera 03/28/17)
Kenya is one of several East African countries ravaged by drought with Somalia said to be on the brink of famine. The number of Kenyans needing emergency food aid has doubled in the past three months to three million, the Red Cross said on Tuesday, as the effect of a devastating drought worsens. Kenya is one of several East African countries suffering from food crises, along with Ethiopia, South Sudan, where famine has already been declared, and Somalia, on the brink of its third famine in 25 years. Outside the region, Yemen and Nigeria are also facing famine, in what the United Nations has called the worst humanitarian crisis since the end of World War II. Like many of its...
(Reuters (Eng) 03/28/17)
As Wanjiku, a Kenyan land rights activist, stepped out of the minibus and into the night, two other passengers pushed her into a nearby car. She had made a mistake: not taking seriously death threats over her campaign to stop logging around Mount Kenya, a UNESCO World Heritage site that is an important source of water for the East African nation and home to endangered elephants. "They told me: 'We have to be at the mugumo tree at midnight'," said the 48-year-old human rights lawyer and single mother, who declined to give her real name out of fear. The mugumo tree is sacred to her Chuka community, which is fighting to win back a 12 km (7.5 miles) stretch of...
(Capitalfm Business 03/28/17)
Four Kenyans are among six aid workers killed in an ambush on March 25 in South Sudan. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs says efforts are currently underway by South Sudan security agents in conjunction with officials from GREDO and UNICEF to recover the bodies of the victims. “The ministry is actively engaging all stakeholders to ascertain the exact circumstances leading to this tragedy” CS Amina Mohamed said Tuesday. The aid workers were killed as they travelled in convoy from the capital Juba to the eastern town of Pibor. Their attackers stopped the car, forced them out and then they were “shot and killed.” Three years of civil war in South Sudan have seen warring parties deny access to aid, attack...

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